"We don't want to be in the niche space; we want to be in general entertainment," Syfy President Dave Howe told Ad Age. Science fiction, fantasy and comic-book movies are, of course, already fairly general entertainment. They account for seven of the top 10 highest-grossing movies every year, Mr. Howe said. But Syfy now wants to offer more as well.
So Syfy will carry a trio of new reality shows, premiering July 15 and airing on Thursdays, that will place Syfy more in the vein of broad-based cable nets such as A&E and Discovery.
"Mary Knows Best," for example, will chronicle radio host, mother of three and "psychic intuitive" Mary Occhino in a humorous docu-soap format, particularly as her children -- a skeptic, a paranormal investigator and a reluctant psychic -- couldn't have inherited her abilities more differently.
"Paranormal Investigators" will follow in the vein of Syfy's "Ghost Hunters" by profiling outstanding cases of supernatural activity, while "Beast Legends" will put a documentary spin on some of the most notorious creatures and myths.
Syfy is also entering the reality competition genre with "Ghost Hunters Academy," pitting aspiring spirit chasers against each other in weekly elimination challenges -- a "Project Runway" for the haunted-house set.